Baseball season is underway in many of the warm-weather states and so far two of the top three teams in the MaxPreps Xcellent 25 National Baseball Rankings have made impressive debuts.
While No. 1 Bishop Gorman does not begin play until mid-March, No. 2 Jesuit (Tampa, Fla.) and No. 3 Carroll (Corpus Christi, Texas) both began the season with big wins. Jesuit shut out its first three opponents and has received outstanding pitching so far, including a nine-strikeout effort from All-American candidate Lance McCullers
. Carroll, meanwhile, beat Moody (Corpus Christi), one of the state's top 4A programs, by a 10-2 count.
No. 4 Archbishop McCarthy (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) won its first three games of the season, but had a bad first inning against Columbus (Miami) Friday and lost 4-1. The Mavericks drop to No. 17 and have another big game this week with Belen Jesuit, a team that defeated Columbus last week.
Other teams off to strong starts include No. 9 Calallen (4-0), No. 11 JW North (2-0) and No. 16 Harvard-Westlake (2-0).
Four teams dropped out this week, including No. 17 Mountain Pointe, No. 20 Flanagan, No. 22 Saguaro and No. 25 Buchanan. Replacing them were Pace, Horizon, Madison Central and Broken Arrow.MaxPreps Xcellent 25 National Baseball Rankings
1. (1 preseason) Bishop Gorman (Las Vegas)
Season opens March 15 at Sierra Vista.2. (2) Jesuit (Tampa, Fla.), 4-0
After three straight shutouts to start the season, Jesuit finally gave up a run to Tampa Catholic before winning 3-1 on Saturday. The Tigers also beat Dunedin 7-0, Spoto 18-0 and Middleton 15-0 to open the season. Lance McCullers
opened the season with the win over Dunedin. He went five innings and gave up three hits while striking out nine and walking one. Conor O'Brien
has also been impressive, going six innings against Middleton with 11 strikeouts, no hits and no walks. Middleton eventually got a hit off a relief pitcher to break up the no-hitter. The Tigers have already smacked four home runs on the season with O'Brien, Max Beermann
, McCullers and Ricky Escobar
each hitting one out during the first three games.
3. (3) Carroll (Corpus Christi, Texas), 1-0
In front of a crowd of 3,473 people, Carroll opened its season with an impressive 10-2 rout of always-talented Moody.
threw a two-hitter in his five innings of work, striking out eight. He also hit a two-run homer that boosted Carroll to a 9-1 lead in the sixth inning. Courtney Hawkins
pitched an inning of relief and needed just 12 pitches to strike out the side.
4. (4) Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.), 0-0
Season opens Thursday vs. Bishop Amat.
5. (6) Don Bosco Prep (Ramsey, N.J.), 0-0
Season opens Thursday at Towson (Md.).6. (7) Spanish Fork (Utah), 0-0
Season opens March 9 vs. Layton (Utah).7. (8) Farragut (Knoxville, Tenn.), 0-0
Season opens March 13 at Lenoir City (Tenn.).8. (9) Washington (New York City), 0-0
Season opens March 13 vs. Cardozo (Bayside, N.Y.).9. (10) Calallen (Corpus Christi, Texas), 4-0
Sharyland has provided the only challenge so far for the Wildcats, who are 4-0 on the season after winning the McAllen-Mission tournament. Sharyland fell 2-1 to Calallen, but all other Wildcat victories were routs, including a 22-2 win over Edinburg North, a 12-0 victory over Porter and a 9-2 win over Harlingen South.10 (11) Gloucester Catholic (N.J.), 0-0
Season opens March 17 at Audubon (N.J.).11. (12) JW North (Riverside, Calif.), 2-0
The defending Southern Section Division 1 champs are off to a solid start with a 15-3 win over Victor Valley and a 7-2 victory over Colony at the Redlands Invitational. Gabriel Clark
and Gabrial Franca
each had three hits in the win over Colony. 12. (14) Parkview (Lilburn, Ga.), 0-0
Season opens Wednesday vs. Collins Hill (Suwanee, Ga.).13. (15) Owasso (Okla.), 0-0
Season opens Thursday vs. Jenks (Okla.).14. (16) Bishop Amat (La Puente, Calif.), 0-0
Season opens Thursday at Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.).15. (18) Columbus (Ga.), 1-0
blasted a three-run home run in the third inning to highlight a 10-0 victory for Columbus in its season opener against Central (Phenix City, Ala.). Phillips finished 2-for-3 with a double and four RBIs to go with his home run. Kyle Carter
went 2-for-3 on offense with a double and went four innings on the mound, giving up two hits with four strikeouts.16. (19) Harvard-Westlake (North Hollywood, Calif.), 2-0
The Wolverines easily defeated Burroughs (Burbank) 13-5 and Saugus 11-2 in the Easton Tournament over the weekend. Lucas Giolito
pitched the first four innings against Burroughs and reached 99 mph on his fastball, according to the Los Angeles Daily News. He gave up two hits in four shutout innings with three strikeouts and no walks. Max Fried
went six innings in the Saugus win, giving up two hits and two walks with nine strikeouts. He reportedly hit 96 mph on the radar. Arden Pabst
has been the hitting star for the Wolverines, hitting a grand slam against Saugus and belting three doubles with five RBIs against Burroughs.17. (4) Archbishop McCarthy (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), 3-1
The Mavericks opened the season with three straight impressive wins before falling to Columbus (Miami) 4-1 on Friday. Columbus got to starting pitcher Andre Martinez
for three runs in the first inning and Yency Almonte limited the Maverick offense to just one run on four hits. Martinez had nine strikeouts in his four innings of work. Earlier in the week, Archbishop McCarthy picked up the school's first win in history over Hollywood Hills, 8-0, set a school record for runs scored in a 32-0 win over Stranahan and opened the season with a 6-2 win over North Broward Prep. Martinez picked up the win against North Broward Prep with Nick Basto
hitting a bases-loaded triple in the win. Basto also had three RBIs against Hollywood Hills.18. (NR) Pace (Fla.), 3-0
Pace has opened the season with shutout wins over Chiles (1-0) and Pensacola (6-0) and routed Milton 19-7. Daniel Hamption
and Stephan Jernigan
each hit a home run in the win over Milton.19. (NR) Horizon (Scottsdale, Ariz.), 4-0
The Huskies opened their season with a 4-0 performance in their own tournament, including a 6-5 win over defending state champion Mountain Pointe.20. (NR) Madison Central (Miss.), 2-0
The Jaguars opened the season with impressive wins over Clinton and Brandon. Madison Central topped Clinton 13-3 and 10-runned Brandon 11-1. The Jaguars have a showdown with Cullman at the Mid-Mississippi Classic on Friday.21. (21) Memorial (Houston), 4-1
Memorial went 4-1 over the weekend at the Cy Fair tournament, falling to Cy Fair 7-5 while beating Klein Oak 2-1, Jersey Village 6-0, Cy Falls 13-10 and Nederland 4-0.22. (13) Rockwall-Heath (Rockwall, Texas), 5-1
Rockwall-Heath went 5-1 at the Waco Invitational, falling only to Red Oak 6-5. Wins included an 11-2 win over Midlothian, a 10-0 win over Ellison (Killeen), a 9-1 victory over Lorena, a 7-2 win over China Spring and a 2-1 victory over West.23. Carroll (Fort Wayne, Ind.), 0-0
Season opens March 30 at Jeffersonville (Ind.).24. Conestoga (Berwyn, Pa.), 0-0
Season opens March 26 at Upper Darby (Drexel Hill, Pa.).25. Broken Arrow (Okla.), 0-0
Season opens Thursday vs. Rogers (Ark.).Dropped Out:
No. 17 Mountain Pointe, No. 20 Flanagan, No. 22 Saguaro; No. 25 Buchanan.